Gwyneth Paltrow Talks Makeup, Entrepreneurship, and Wage Equality
Gwyneth Paltrow is already famous as an Oscar-winning actor, lifestyle guru and cookbook author. Now, she can add makeup maven to the list.
In February, Paltrow signed on as creative director of Juice Beauty, an organic cosmetics maker. She also became a shareholder in the company, which in turn invested in Goop, the lifestyle website that Paltrow is trying to turn into a media and e-commerce empire. In addition to helping Juice develop their own products, she is currently collaborating with the company to develop a branded line of skin care to sell on her site.
One of Paltrow's latest missions is to land Goop its first round of venture capital funding, a process that is now in its final stages. She already has a lot of the business lingo down pat, peppering her conversation with terms like "burn rate" and "term sheet." Paltrow says she has big plans to grow Goop and expand into new verticals. She doesn't rule out an eventual IPO, though she does say that possibility "seems a little far off."
Paltrow and Juice Beauty CEO Karen Behnke sat down in the cosmetic company's San Francisco-area offices to talk to Fortune about their collaboration. In a wide ranging conversation, Paltrow touched on everything from the importance of organics, to her daily routine at Goop, to the internet fracas over her failed experiment with trying to live on the $29 a week allotted to families on Food Stamps.
This transcript has been edited for length and clarity.
Fortune: You are the creative director now for Juice Beauty. What does that entail?
Paltrow: The company is kind of my dream in terms of alignment. I feel so invested not only financially, but also because I really believe in what Karen is doing for the sustainability of the planet for our kids. Karen, she’s really the leader in these practices. It’s very important as a woman and as a mother and as someone who preaches a non-toxic lifestyle. It’s a dream partnership.
What are you going to be doing? Are you going to be chiming in every once in a while or will you go so far as to come up with scientific formulas for the makeup?
We'll leave the scientific formulas to the chemists. I'm very involved in everything from textures, consistencies, color, palette. With the makeup, I've been very involved in everything—not the chemical formulations—but how the formulations will look and feel. All the way to the packaging and branding.
What is the advantage of organic makeup versus all the rest?
The whole cosmetics industry is totally unregulated. They're using chemicals that are proven to be carcinogenic, they’re endocrine disrupting—really not good for you. Obviously, we're living in an age where we’re all becoming more and more aware of a links between what we're ingesting and adverse effects on our health. Ten or fifteen years ago with organic food, people didn't understand it, and now we have this mass movement.
People are really understanding now how absorbent an organ the skin is—how when we put toxic chemicals on our skin, that it's not good for you. And I think in the next 20 years, Juice will be referenced as, hopefully, the first mass-market organic high-performance makeup and skin care.